OK, this is one of my favorites, and the only new thing I've made this week, so I'm going to share it with you and let you know how I made it a little more healthy. The core part of this recipe came from the book Carrot Cake Murder by Joanne Fluke, but we altered it as we went, and it turned out really yummy.
This recipe makes a lot; the author says 12-16 servings. We took it to a High Priests social Friday night and brought 1 serving home with us. If you don't want 12-16 servings, cut the amounts in half.
2 big bundles of broccoli (you want to end up with about 8-10 c of broccoli florets)
1/2 c chopped onion
2/3 c golden raisins (you can use brown raisins, but goldens are naturally a little sweeter)
1 c small red grapes
1/2 c sugar (I used a scant 1/2 c, because that's all I had left in the bag)
1 c mayonnaise (I used low-fat mayo, which worked fine in this recipe)
2 tbsp raspberry vinegar
6 strips bacon cooked and crumbled
1/4 c shelled, dry roasted sunflower seeds (opt)
Cut up the broccoli, using just the florets; you want the pieces pretty small. Mix with the onion, raisins, and grapes. (The original recipe didn't call for grapes. My DH added them, and they were a great addition.)
Make the dressing, mixing the sugar, mayo, and vinegar. (I'd never used raspberry vinegar before, but it was perfect for this recipe - not too strong. The original recipe calls for red wine vinegar; I think the raspberry worked just as well.) Stir till smooth.
Pour the dressing over the broccoli mixture. I made the whole thing in a Tupperware bowl so I could put the lid on and shake well. If you don't have a bowl with a lid, stir carefully so that the broccoli gets coated with the dressing.
Sprinkle the bacon and sunflower seeds on the top right before serving.
Notes: The bacon and sunflower seeds are to add crunchy texture (and a little flavor). You can use regular bacon if you don't mind having a bit of fat, or turkey bacon (we like Oscar Mayer brand best), or even bacon bits.
You can make the salad several hours before you're going to serve it; the flavors just blend and get yummy together. If you do make it in advance, wait till right before you serve to add the bacon and sunflower seeds, if you want the crunch. Or if you're lazy like I am, mix everything together and put it in the fridge till you're ready to serve.
Also - the original recipe called for 2 c shredded sharp cheddar, mixed in with the veggies. I've had a lot of incarnations of this salad but had never had it with cheese. We put cheese in it for the HP event, but I like the salad just as well without, and leaving it out really helps reduce the fat. And makes it so Stewie can eat it!